Freelance writer, photographer and science communicator. Always looking for new experiences and discoveries. Find out more at www.lagom.com.au
Published June 27th 2016
Modern menu in a picturesque location
Based on a recommendation from another local eatery (always a good place to start) I recently ended up at Arimia Estate. Nestled down a short gravel road, with an imposing hill behind, it's a real gem.
They describe themselves as a "home away from home", which is a description hard to improve on. The warm and relaxed vibe envelopes you as soon as you walk in the door. High ceilings and earthy tones make up the interior, flanked by walls of windows bringing the outside in. If that's not enough you really can enjoy the outdoors with a large decked area and a lawn (maybe for some boules?). The deck is an all-weather affair, from the sun drenched summer months to blankets and heaters in winter.
The lunch menu here (chef Evan Hayter) is modern, with choices such as gnocchi, beef, cod and pork. And although this was strictly a girls lunch, it was so exciting to see real food on the menu for kids! The gnocchi with braised goat was so tender, hands-down the best gnocchi I've ever had. The pork croquettes ($12) were flavoursome and the pork collarbutt ($33) with potato puree soul-warming. Duck was the special on the day and it was beautiful. The meals are perfectly portioned and it's the sort of food that makes you feel cosy and content.
Arimia wines are made exclusively from estate-grown fruit and you can sample and buy direct from the cellar door inside the restaurant. However, on our visit it was nearly impenetrable it was so popular. Happily, the menu has suggestions for the perfect wine match for your meal, in our case a lovely chardonnay. The staff really know their stuff; it would be great to linger longer and explore more wines next time.
The dessert menu at Arimia was surprisingly delightful too, certainly not an afterthought. The only problem with such a varied list is what to choose, so we elected to choose a couple and share. The chocolate mousse tart was my pick, simply divine.
Arimia Estate oozes understated style and is well worth the stop in the Margaret River region. It's so serene in this little spot and if you like it so much you can't bear to leave, you'll be pleased to know they also have a guesthouse for rent.